My wife Lori and I were so saddened to hear of Beth Dunn's passing. We knew her from Our Lady of Assumption Church, as well as Ralphs grocery store. There are those people who define a community, and Beth was one of them. You meet these people, and because of their outgoing and welcoming way, they make you feel part of a special place.
July 2007 Archives
Re: your July 30 article, â€œReaching kidsâ€?:
Your article singles out a 20-year-old young woman who is the mother of three and working as a waitress as an example of the effectiveness of the Gang Violence Protection Program. I wonder if any of the probation workers and law enforcement officers interviewed for the article would consider their daughter to be a success if she were a 20-year-old single mother of three working a dead-end job as a waitress for poverty level wages? I think not.
Re: your July 30 editorial â€œRevenge of nonsmokersâ€?:
It is strange to note The Star is willing to support the rights of individuals to not only pollute our county's air, but to further damage the health of our residents. Smoking killed my father, my stepfather and my mother.
Re: your July 26 article, â€œBoeing may be fined for water runoff violationsâ€?:
What is it going to take for officials to hit Boeing where it hurts? As they're cranking in their sales of multimillion-dollar jumbo jets and enjoying stock market profits, they still don't get our environmental issues!
I've had enough. We as residents of our wonderful community in Simi Valley need to rise up and say, "We are not going to take it anymore!"
As a teacher and advocate for children, I am increasingly alarmed at the growing rate of obesity among American children. Over the years, I have been shocked and upset to see many of my kindergarten students, who were slender at age 5, become noticeably overweight by the fifth grade. Obviously, the diet of children is largely to blame, but I believe there is another cause that is often overlooked: Children today simply do not go outside to play.
Artie Shaw, the legendary music figure of the 1930s and 1950s, died Dec. 30, 2004, in Newbury Park, where he had lived a number of years before his death. On Aug. 4, the Big Band & Jazz Hall of Fame Orchestra will pay a tribute concert to honor Artie Shaw in Vista. Shouldnâ€™t a similar concert be played locally to honor this musical legend who lived and died here? Shouldnâ€™t a painting or photograph of Artie Shaw be hung on a wall of the Countrywide Center for the Performing Arts?
We have a park named for Alex Fiore. We have a library named for Grant R. Brimhall. Couldnâ€™t we do the same for Artie Shaw? His talents ranked with Benny Goodman, Glenn Miller and Duke Ellington. And Artie was our neighbor.
Re: your July 18 article, â€œDistrict apologizes for Holocaust talkâ€?:
After reading the article regarding the program at the Goebel Center, especially the pamphlet, â€œDid it happen?â€? I am amazed the officials who run the Conejo Recreation and Park District could put on such a program.
One of the things the Nazis did best was keep records. Anyone sent to a concentration camp had a number tattooed on his or her arm. Also, meticulous records were kept regarding gassing and torture and also country of origin and religion.
The California Legislature has an ideal opportunity to balance the state budget without raising taxes.
Large and small businesses solve budget shortfalls all the time by downsizing and streamlining. They lay off unproductive workers, consolidate operations and eliminate departments that no longer contribute to the companiesâ€™ objectives. They quickly adjust to constantly changing requirements.
Re: your July 28 article, â€œWard not guilty in pudding toss incidentâ€?:
After reading this article, I'm wondering if the District Attorney's Office is so desperate for things to do that they have to prosecute a mental patient for flicking pudding! When guards take the job of tending to mental patients, that kind of behavior should not be a surprise.
Re: Cary Savitchâ€™s July 29 Pulse piece, â€œLegalitis infects St. Johnâ€™s Medical Centerâ€?:
My sincere thanks to Dr. Savitch for his rational, articulate plea for sanity in the St. John's Medical Center mold hysteria. I welcome his commentary for its scientific information â€” so far completely absent from the public discussion â€” and his appeal to logic over litigator scaremongering.
I don't understand how the oil companies arrive at the price they charge for gas. I paid $2.89 a gallon a couple of days ago. Three months ago I was paying $3.23 a gallon at the same station.
It can't have anything to do with supply and demand. We are now in the middle of the summer driving season when demand is greatest. And from what I read, refinery output is lower than it has been.
And it can't have anything to do with the cost of raw materials. Three month ago, a barrel of crude was in the $50 range. Today it's in the $70 range.
Re: responses to my July 12 letter, â€œStudents being brainwashedâ€?:
Some of the response letters implied that since military recruiters are allowed on the high school campus, it somehow balances out the one-sided â€œpeace at any costâ€? message being presented by these â€œpeace activists.â€? They all neglected to point out that when military recruiters do come on campus, they are dogged by members of the â€œanti-war groups.â€? The atmosphere is such that any student talking to a recruiter feels uncomfortable. I doubt that any recruiters are interested in delivering a political message.
All of Ventura County should take pride in the successful Stand Down held for homeless veterans July 27-29 at the California National Guard Armory in Ventura.
For the 50th time, the all-volunteer organization brought together Ventura County social agencies, veterans organizations and volunteer groups for the annual event. A carefully organized temporary military encampment provided two nights and three days of hot meals, shoes and clothes, haircuts, medical and legal help for some of our homeless comrades who never emotionally "came home" from Vietnam, as well as some of the younger casualties of combat. It was a community action at its best.
I am a homeowner and resident of Piru. I realize that Piru is at the far end of Ventura County and perhaps it is not considered to be a very important part of the county, but we â€œPiruviansâ€? are like any other resident of Ventura County in many ways. We work hard and deserve to be notified when permits are requested for activities that will impact our properties.
Re: Ronald E. Kellyâ€™s July 26 letter, â€œâ€˜Bush Derangement Syndromeâ€™â€?:
I am always amazed at people who continually compare everything President Bush does to what President Clinton did. I am a Democrat, and I do not want a Democratic president to have the power Bush is trying to amass, nor did I agree with everything Clinton did. I wonder how Kelly would feel if Hillary Clinton wins the presidency and picks up where Bush leaves off. Will he still support the kind of governing currently being practiced?
I must tell you about my recent dealings with the U.S. Postal Service.
I recently decided to mail a small photo album to my daughter's father-in-law. I placed the album in a cushioned envelope and proceeded to the post office. My plan was to weigh the envelope, affix the required postage and drop it in a mailbox.
Michael Moore is disliked by the right because he exposes the flaws in our system.
If you are against Moore and consider his latest documentary, â€œSicko,â€? a piece of leftist propaganda, consider these recent developments.
First, the state of Massachusetts recently enacted a state healthcare program, making insurance mandatory and more affordable. It is the centerpiece of a law approved by the Legislature that civic and business leaders hope will substantially reduce the ranks of the state's 400,000 uninsured and the number of people who seek costly "uncompensated" care in hospital emergency rooms. Imagine the novel idea: medical insurance that pays for healthcare!
Does our vote count? Is the plan to create a Simi Valley megadump a done deal?
We were recently told by our current supervisor and his predecessor that there were no plans to expand Waste Management's landfill. Yet, county staffers and Waste Management have been talking about these plans for almost a decade.
Re: Joe R. Howryâ€™s July 29 essay, â€œMom spots a stuffed shirtâ€?:
After reading the essay, I asked myself what is the purpose of a broadcasted political debate. We are told it is for the candidates to get their positions out into the public. Yet, over time, fewer watch such debates. The fact is, these debates have become a safe place for politicos to restate their spin in a safe environment. Ho hum. I can read those positions in newspapers the next day. Why waste an hour watching a box with moving faces?
Re: your July 18 article, â€œDistrict apologizes for Holocaust talkâ€?:
As a reader of the articles about the Conejo Recreation and Park District investigation of the Holocaust event, I have a few comments.
Re: your July 19 article, â€œArrest in tortoise mutilation; second tortoise missing in Simi Valleyâ€?:
During construction on our home in June, our tortoise, Wart, wandered out the open gate, out the cul de sac and was heading toward a park when a Verizon employee noticed a car swerving to avoid hitting something on the street.
The Verizon man saw it was a tortoise. He picked Wart up, saving him from injury or death, and asked neighbors if it was their tortoise. They did not know to whom it belonged. The Verizon man took him home.
Re: your July 20 article, â€œTheaterâ€™s operator has received three loans, owes Oxnard $187,000â€?:
This article exposes serious flaws, and perhaps corruption, in the Oxnard City Council, namely among the four who were found guilty of violating the Brown Act.
Re: your July 20 article, â€œCineplex given more help, owes the city $187,000â€?:
Let's just go ahead and say it. The city of Oxnard is in dire straits.
Just how bad can a city administration be for this city and this county? Loans are apparently being dealt out to a failing cineplex operator who somehow already has negotiated a $500,000 line of credit, knowing full well that "future additional requests" would need to be made. And then, when "additional" requests for previously approved funds are made or additional loans are given at the order of the community development director, the council isn't notified? How in the world can this happen?
Re: Grant Marcusâ€™ July 26 commentary, â€œHealthcare for profit badâ€?:
I am also a registered nurse, and I work for a medical insurance company. I donâ€™t know which company Mr. Grant worked for, but in my nine-plus years with this particular company, I have never denied a service to anyone, nor have any of my nurse colleagues. That is not a nurseâ€™s responsibility. Nor would I ever presume to tell a doctor â€œhow to practice medicine,â€? as stated in the commentary.
Re: your July 26 article, "Berries bringing big bucks":
Agricultural Commissioner Earl McPhail, speaking about the drop in sales of Valencia and navel oranges from 2002 to 2006, was quoted as saying, "It really doesn't make a lot of sense to grow Valencias and navels here."
Every hour someone is newly diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Despite decades of study, the causes of this disease are still unclear, and there is no cure.
As a veteran living with a service-connected diagnosis of multiple sclerosis and as the niece of a man who died from MS-related complications, I write to share with you the importance of continued MS research.
I'm urging our federal legislators to support the $15 million defense appropriation for MS research funding through the congressionally directed medical research programs.
â€” Eve Meek, Oxnard
I just need to vent my disapproval of Time-Warner Cable. Here is my story.
On July 20, in the early afternoon, we turned on the TV. There was no sound, and the screen read, â€œOne moment please, this channel should be available shortly.â€? Below that, it read, â€œTo be announced, 5 KTLA.â€?
We called in because all the neighbors had TV. My husband was pretty harsh with the lady at the cable company.
Re: your July 21 article, â€œSuit challenges Lang Ranch park plansâ€?:
Kudos to James Gustafson for keeping abreast of the Lang Ranch Park issue. This is still America, and residents have the right and obligation to protect their quality of life, home values and safety.
Many heard the same thing at a 2005 meeting. When local residents of this quiet area dared to voice their concerns about lights, sound systems, concession stands, concert stage, traffic, etc., the chairman of the meeting promptly added more ballfields to the project.
Re: Robert W. Dingman's July 5 letter, â€œCondemning healthcare systemâ€?:
Mr. Dingmanâ€™s personal opinion of Michael Moore has clouded his judgment. Healthcare is a nonpartisan issue, and Moore has correctly illustrated this in his movie, "Sicko." I recommend Dingman set aside his personal opinions and see the movie for its own merit.
Re: Wendy Dagerâ€™s July 19 column, â€œPointing fingers doesnâ€™t solve textbook gougingâ€?:
Dager fails to tell the whole story on college textbooks and all that publishers are doing to provide more choices that help students and college faculty.
After nearly two days in the Superior Court system in Ventura, as a prospective juror, Iâ€™ve come away shaking my head in disbelief. The case involved a 20-year-old female ward of the California Youth Authority in Camarillo who was accused of misdemeanor battery for flicking pudding onto a corrections officer. I left after all testimony but before the verdict, so I donâ€™t know the outcome. But I have some questions.
Re: your July 24 article, â€œTeen longboarders test limits of speedâ€?:
Regarding the lunacy of speedboarding down residential streets, will Camarillo wait until the inevitable disaster of a child smashing into a car before enacting a sensible law?
The California Association of Mortgage Brokers recommends that consumers interview several originators before taking a loan, refinancing their current mortgage or considering any alternative loan to finance a home. This is the most important purchase most families will ever make, and consumers need support from experienced professionals. People shop around for everything from automobiles to exercise bikes; it should be no different when shopping for a home.
CAMB offers a free consumer referral service that allows people to interview several originators, all of whom subscribe to a strict code of ethics. Referrals are available online at www.CAMBweb.org.
Re: your July 22 article, â€œWoman killed by hit-run driver rememberedâ€?:
I did not know Beth Dunn, but I knew who she was. She was often the courtesy clerk when I was in the checkout line at Ralphs. All of the courtesy clerks at Ralphs are pleasant and friendly, but Beth is the only one I remember. Something intangible about her touched me and made her memorable and always made me feel a little bit better when I left the Ralphs. I guess I was just grateful that she was part of my community. I will miss her at Ralphs and will think about her every time I go in there.
Re: your July 22 article, â€œWoman killed by hit-run driver rememberedâ€?:
Beth Dunn was an angel. Everyone knows that, and the community came together to celebrate her shortened life. The church was overflowing with admirers both at Bethâ€™s memorial service and her funeral. How could she have touched so many in just 45 years? Well, she did it in her simple, continuous, sincere and loving ways. Beth was best known for her hugs, but she also was a great listener, worker and genuine good person. She may have been an angel, but now, in my book, Beth Dunn is a saint.
â€” Jim Abing, Ventura
The state of California is struggling to set up "affordable healthcare." Itâ€™s really very encouraging, but we all are looking for affordable health insurance to be purchased by the employer. Apparently, affordability is the key issue, but in my opinion, timely fair payments to the providers should be the key issue.
Health insurance is purchased to facilitate treatments as and when required. Thus the most vital components are the purchasers, the insurance companies and the doctors.
Re: Colleen Cason's July 15 column, "Rock heads roster of county's small wonders" and Mel Lowryâ€™s July 24 letter of response, â€œIt's George, all right":
To all of you who will drive to the top of the Conejo Grade to view the profile: When we moved to Thousand Oaks 38 years ago, it was common knowledge that the profile jutting out from the top of the mountain is that of an Indian. When showing out-of-town guests our beautiful county, we always point out the rock formation. We tell them about the ancient legend that the Indian is overlooking and protecting the valley below.
One thing I really love about liberals: They don't let facts get in the way of their ranting. Let's consider the "Fairness (only by liberal definition) Doctrine.â€? All you good little liberals go to the library and look up "market-driven."
I have been in the media since 1971. If people are watching or listening to a show, advertisers will support it. Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Bill Oâ€™Reilly have no problem finding advertisers â€” maybe because 90 percent of mainstream media is so liberal, almost to the point of being un-American, and so full of hate for whoever doesn't agree with their tiny little narrow points of view that people are bored with the nonsense.
Re: your July 7 article, â€œEmergency room doctor held in sexual battery caseâ€?:
I am writing to express my concern over the reporting of a doctor at Simi Valley Hospital being arrested. Obviously, these are very serious charges that need to be thoroughly investigated.
Re: Bob Munsonâ€™s July 8 letter, "Tired of war, warmongers":
I enjoyed with amusement Munsonâ€™s letter. I, along with fellow Brits, and Americans am sick of war and warmongers. Iâ€™m sick of the war initiated by those who war against us and those heinous warmongers who persist in the destruction of Israel, Britain and the United States. And they call us the Great Satan?
The headline in The Star on Nov. 10, 1992, read, "City Council gives OK to desal plant."
I would really like to know, with all the Bush-bashing for lying and deceiving, who's more honest: the Republicans or Democrats? Letâ€™s see: present administration, weapons of mass destruction; past administration, "I didn't have sex or inhale."
All parties lie, some more than others. Just what party doesn't lie?
The state of our country is a mess. A little bit of honesty from our so-called elected officials is really needed.
Re: Diana Thornâ€™s July 19 letter, â€œGive Iraq more timeâ€?:
In response to her mourning our "cowardly Congress," I have to admit to being as disappointed as she, but for a far different set of reasons.
Is she not aware there are already term limits in place? They are called elections.
You know what bugs me? All of this recent talk of the fairness doctrine being brought back for a rehashing by the party that thinks its ox is being gored.
First of all, it's an obvious and pernicious offense to free speech.
Re: your July 22 article, â€œOverhauling state prison sentencing discussedâ€?:
My general response to this article was, "Why put more money into a broken system?" We incarcerate a higher percentage of our population than any other industrialized nation. Something is definitely wrong. I believe that our entire justice system needs to be overhauled. Pouring more money into expanding a penal system that isn't working and incarcerating more of our population is the wrong thing to do.
â€” Harold Cartlidge, Ventura
It is absolutely disgraceful the way President Bush is maligned by the liberal Congress and media. He has taken on one of the most difficult issues ever attempted by any president â€” that of defeating al-Qaida and other Islamic terrorists throughout the world, and all he has ever received is criticism and derision instead of cooperation. When the Islamic terrorists in Iraq and other countries are defeated, he should go down in history as one of this country's very finest presidents.
Re: Morton Resnickâ€™s July 15 Pulse piece, â€œBeacon for legal immigrants to U.S.â€?:
Racism and bigotry are unforgivable, but even more so when it comes from a member of the Jewish community, considering that we have been subjected to it for millennia. Apparently, Mr. Resnick has forgotten the biblical injunction (Leviticus 19), "You shall love the stranger as yourself, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt."
I took a spill on my bicycle and wound up in the emergency room at Los Robles Medical Center in Thousand Oaks. I had a fractured pelvis. After looking at the X-rays and CT scans, the doctors thought it best to contact the experts at St. John's Health Center in Santa Monica.
I was sent to St. John's, where I stayed for two days. After looking at my X-rays and CT scans, specialists there decided that I didn't need to be cut open and I was sent to a rehab center affiliated with that hospital.
Re: Terry Paulsonâ€™s July 23 essay, â€œBe vigilant, but also learnâ€?:
His theme is that the buck doesn't stop here and that itâ€™s everyone else's fault that al-Qaida is stronger than ever. This is the Bush doctrine, too.
Imagine yourself in Iraq. According to the Iraq Study Group, there is, on average, one explosion an hour somewhere in the city of Baghdad. That's good for the nerves. About 500,000 Iraqis have been killed and many more wounded since we invaded their country. This is a country of only 24 million. Why?
Re: John M. Sherwoodâ€™s July 17 commentary, â€œOur turn to fight unjust lawsâ€?:
Sherwood should stay with preaching the Lord's word and stay away from insulting America and Americans with his liberal diatribe about how nice it would be if we let everyone in with no restrictions, etc. Thank you, but no.
â€” Joe Laraneta, Westlake Village
U.S. Rep. Elton Gallegly wrote in a letter:
Re: Michael Pringerâ€™s July 19 letter, â€œDemocrats hope Iraq failsâ€?:
Mr. Pringer mentions â€œpreliminary negative news and ignoring the positive.â€? How many years have we been in Iraq? How many more years do we wait, and how many more need to perish before Mr. Pringer admits failure? It has been four years, so do we wait five, 10 or more? Was Mr. Pringer also one of the advocates of continuing the war in Vietnam as well? They seem to be doing quite well after we left. U.S. businesses are having great success working over there, and thousands of Americans vacation there now. Just think, we could still have been fighting the war in Vietnam to defeat communism.
â€” George Pohoski, Camarillo
Wouldnâ€™t it be nice to have the â€œcity dadsâ€? do something for which everyone in Ventura would be praising and commending them? That probably hasnâ€™t been done since the first city council was formed, but it is possible!
We presently have a grouping of poorly chosen materials combined into the most atrocious looking, non-functional, deteriorating and pathetically humorous configuration ever fabricated: the bus terminal. It cost $2 million-plus of Ventura citizensâ€™ money. Yes, it was our money!
Are there no capable people in Ventura? Every time we need to hire someone, we seem to go across the country to get someone who does not have a clue as to who we are or what we want. Who wants growth? Most of us want a safe, quite, beautiful place to reside, with good local leaders paid a fair wage, not top wage in the nation. We already lead the state in most areas of compensation. What happened to pride, honor and civic responsibility from our local government?
I am delighted that Bob the tortoise is on the road to recovery despite the cruelty and mutilations he endured, all of which have made national news. Donations have been received for Bobâ€™s hospital and medical care. I know the few times we had to hospitalize a pet, the expenses for daily care just piled up.
I see that Wal-Mart is trying to put another of its box stores in our town, despite the fact that the one in Oxnard draws all who want to shop there.
What is it about Wal-Mart that creates opposition to its seemingly endless expansion? After all, they offer jobs, which seems to be the ultimate boon to an area nowadays. Are they evil or are they good? Are they a mixture of the two? It depends on whom you ask.
Re: Murray Rosenbluthâ€™s July 20 commentary, â€œHueneme budget gainsâ€?:
Few things are harder than dealing with competing self-interests. Success in budgeting depends on treating all self-interests appropriately.
There is a "500-pound gorilla" in the Port Hueneme budgeting process that is being ignored. It showed up earlier this year at a council/staff workshop. A consultant described it this way: "If you are going to get your financial house in order, you must concentrate on keeping A and B employees and getting rid of C and D employees."
Re: your July 19 article, â€œOxnard to allow second cineplexâ€?:
To honor the city's commitment to the revitalization of downtown Oxnard by not overturning the movie-theater zoning law would be honest, sincere, correct, ethical, just, true, straight, good and plain, simply right.
Not to honor the much-celebrated intent and almost patriotic political salesmanship would be, "Pete and Repeat walked down the street, Pete fell down and who was left?" "That's a joke, son, that's a joke."
â€” Tom Joyce, Oxnard
Where is the thinking of our leadership? In the beginning of the Iraq conflict, it was the original plan to remove Saddam Hussein from power. Neither Congress nor the American people ever agreed to get involved in a revolution. As soon as Saddam was dethroned, our job was done.
All of those Arab Muslim tribes have been fighting each other for centuries. The questions in my mind are: Did we attack Iraq for oil? Did we attack Iraq because our present president want revenge for Saddam trying to assassinate his father?
Re: your July 21 article, â€œAmericans looking short; healthcare may be factorâ€?:
The article states, â€œSome researchers have even suggested that tall people are more intelligent.â€? This is a fallacy.
Re: John Patonâ€™s July 17 commentary, â€œSanctuary allows time for processâ€?:
Mr. Paton closes by saying, â€œLet us be at least as merciful to working parents who want their children to grow up Americans.â€?
Those children will grow up as Americans! Theyâ€™ll just be growing up as Americans while living in Mexico, El Salvador, Canada or whatever country in which their parents are legal residents!
â€” Martin Nehring, Somis
Re: your July 19 article, â€œOxnard Council votes 4-1 for baseball fieldsâ€?:
The article states, â€œThe council sided with supporters, saying the facility will be a boon for Oxnard's youths and the city's economy, which would reap benefits from hotel stays during tournaments."
I was under the impression College Park was to be for the people of Oxnard, not for people from other cities to fill up our hotels. Why should our park system subsidize a private concern? What a rip-off!
Re: Ed Jonesâ€™ July 11 commentary, â€œWhite House â€˜fall guyâ€™ was working with a safety netâ€?:
Mr. Jones, a political science professor at Pierce College, is incorrect regarding the background of I. Lewis â€œScooterâ€? Libby's sentence commutation. Whether he should have been commuted is a subject for another time.
My issues with Mr. Jones are when he states:
Re: Wendy Dagerâ€™s July 19 commentary, â€œPointing fingers doesnâ€™t solve textbook gougingâ€?:
Ms. Dager talks as if textbook gouging is a new phenomenon, which it definitely is not. I attended college more than 50 years ago, and we students were being bilked out of money then by the schools who were probably getting a kickback in one form or another from the book publishers.
Re: your July 18 article, â€œDistrict apologizes for Holocaust talkâ€?:
This article addressed the issue of John Bravos chairing a series of seminars on comparative religion, choosing to frame his June seminar with the question of whether the Holocaust happened.
This letter is for whomever took it upon himself to steal from the items in my driveway that were waiting for a charity pickup on July 18. I hope this person considers the effect that the loss of revenue might have for the Battered Women's Shelter as he enjoys his new television, exercise bicycle, lamp and other household items. These items were clearly marked for a charity. They were not freebies for the community at large. This person should be ashamed of himself!
â€” Linda Hogue, Simi Valley
The barbarian that stole and mutilated the tortoise deserves nothing less than life in prison. If this coward will do this to a powerless creature, think what he is capable of. Throw this punk in jail.
â€” Rick Freeman, Simi Valley
Re: Bill Martinâ€™s June 29 commentary, â€œThe union will lose in strikeâ€?:
I donâ€™t think Mr. Martin knows what he is talking about.
I worked for the grocery business for 35 years. He probably never had to stand in one spot eight hours a day listening to hundreds of people, good and bad, or try and fill the 40-degree dairy case from behind for one or two hours at a time, trying to keep the special items filled and the ice cream case filled. He probably didnâ€™t unload three or four trucks a day, plus take everything off the pellets the merchandise came on and inventory everything and separate and stock for the night crew.
Re: your July 15 article, â€œWaterfront revivalâ€?:
Once again, The Star has acted as the public relations department for the Channel Islands Harbor Department.
Most of the alleged facts that Harbor Director Lyn Krieger was quoted as saying are not true. The two major marinas in the harbor are deleting most of the smaller boat slips, and the reason most of the leaseholders in the harbor are afraid to speak out is fear of reprisal from her.
Re: your July 18 article, â€œUnion, grocers avert a strikeâ€?:
I was totally surprised to read that the union and the grocery stores had apparently reached an agreement and wouldn't be going out on strike pending a vote by the workers.
Why are the icecaps on Mars melting? NASA has reported this. If you can relate this question to the debate here on Earth regarding global warming and human activity, you will understand why so many dispute the conclusions that carbon dioxide is the culprit. The average amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is only about 0.05 percent, and plants love it! When one reads â€œpurchase carbon credits,â€? relate it to what it really is: a new global tax.
â€” Steve Thomas, Ventura
Re: your July 13 article, â€œAn innâ€™s outcryâ€?:
I am following up on the article about Tom Wolf and his attempts to open Pine Mountain Inn and the uphill battle he has been fighting with Ventura County.
One of the main issues he is facing is that the county rezoned his property in 1988 and did not bother to notify him before the rezoning took place or after the rezoning took place. In May of 2007, Mr. Wolf received written notification that his restaurant should have closed eight years ago.
Re: your July 18 editorial, â€œTurn the tap for water useâ€?:
Whoever wrote that glowing editorial about how great city water is must not have tasted or smelled Ventura city water earlier this summer when, for three weeks, it smelled and tasted like old swamp water because they were "purging the system." But never fear, it was OK to drink â€” or so the city said.
â€” Charles E. Voigtsberger, Ventura
When the congressional hearing on 9/11 was being televised, Condolezza Rice was asked about a memo that was sent to the president from an intelligence agency stating that al-Qaida wanted to attack this country within our boundaries. She dismissed this with the comment that it just said they wanted to attack. There was no follow-up, no questions about their capability. It was ignored.
There were reports that this president had been warned repeatedly that al-Qaida was dangerous, but that he was too focused on starting a war with Iraq to listen. He allowed 9/11 to happen, then he used this as further "evidence" that we should attack Iraq because they were behind the attacks.
I was angered but not surprised to find that the city of Ventura had elected to spend $20,000 to clean sculptures along the Ventura River Trail. After all, these rusted pieces of machinery masquerading as art were imposed on us by our local government in the first place.
I walk along the river trail frequently, and each time I am struck by how very ugly these pieces are. I donâ€™t know who thought that the industrial west Ventura area was so short of rusted metal that we needed to enshrine some on pedestals, add some meaningless phrases and call it art.
Re: Deacon Manuel Valenciaâ€™s July 15 Pulse page commentary, â€œA stranger knocksâ€? and John Patonâ€™s July 17 commentary, â€œSanctuary allows time for processâ€?:
If Valencia wants his church to be a refuge for the lawless, so be it, but I will work with other American citizens to have the churchâ€™s tax status revoked.
Here are the real facts.
Re: your July 18 editorial, â€œTurn the tap for water useâ€?:
Hereâ€™s another argument against bottled water: It is a big contributor to high gasoline prices and car exhaust emissions.
Awhile back, when President Bush wanted other affected countries to participate in discussions with North Korea on shutting down their nuclear facilities, The Star ran front-page criticisms and editorial attacks on Bush for not being willing to go one-on-one with North Korea.
Now that North Korea has agreed to close down its nuclear facilities, The Star has had no editorials that I have seen giving any credit to Bush's way of dealing with the problem, and The Star's news report on the event was one page ahead of Fryâ€™s full-page ad.
â€” Don Harris, Thousand Oaks
Bless them all: the city of Thousand Oaks, Conejo Open Space Conservation Agency, Conejo Recreation and Parks Department and all participants of the Rancho Potrero community workshop. This was our opportunity to review a conceptual plan to develop the site at the former Olympia Farms to make it more accessible to the public.
Councilwoman Christy Weir has failed the city of Ventura time and time again.
She was elected in large part based on her promises to advocate for economic development and business growth in Ventura. However, she is one of the leading opponents to bringing Wal-Mart to the Kmart shopping center on Victoria Avenue. This would do nothing but increase the sales tax base in the city by revitalizing a dying retail center and help to provide funding for needed police and fire staffing in the city â€” something she didn't hesitate to ask the taxpayers to foot the bill for in the failed sales-tax initiative on the last city ballot.
Previous articles on the effort being made to find a way to shoehorn a Wal-Mart into the space presently occupied by Kmart have been an eye opener. The very fact they are considering underground parking speaks to the lack of space for a big-box outlet in the proposed area.
Victoria Avenue, the main artery from Telegraph Road to the Highway 101, is currently an eight-lane, 45-mph highway, and most of the time it is full of bumper-to-bumper cars and trucks. I guess the additional traffic generated by a Wal-Mart could be accommodated if we took away the sidewalks and went to 10 lanes and put up freeway-type walls to divert the noise and pollution upward.
The lack of public input on the development of Fisherman's Wharf prior to awarding the lease to Edward Czuker by the Ventura County Board of Supervisors is irresponsible. He may be totally qualified, but without a detailed plan and the lease in hand, he is free to abuse the public trust. To what and whose standards will he be held? Where is the scope of the project defined? What tax revenues are anticipated? Where else could this happen?
â€” Peter Poulson, Oxnard
Re: your July 15 article, â€œWal-Mart restraints sought in Venturaâ€?:
According to this article, Nelson Hernandez, Ventura's community development director, wants "to make it perfectly clear that Wal-Mart is welcome if they comply with our guidelines."
Re: Steve Walton's July 12 letter, "Students being brainwashed":
As both a founding member and the vice president of the Ventura High School Peacers Club, I must beg to differ with Mr. Walton's belief that my fellow students and I are being "brainwashed" by activists. It is disappointing that Mr. Walton underestimates my peers' and my own ability to think for ourselves and make informed decisions based on the varying influences around us. And though he referred to us as mere "children" in his letter, may I remind him that we are rather teens â€” many of whom will be voting in the upcoming 2008 election.
Rancho Potrero is 326 acres of beautiful, natural open space abutting the National Park Service property in the southwestern end of the Conejo Valley. Thanks to the vision of the Conejo Recreation and Park District and the city of Thousand Oaks, it is now owned by the taxpayers of those two entities.
This land is an important part of the open space inventory in the Conejo Valley, and it is vital that those who have opinions on what should be done and what should not be done on this property let the CRPD and the city of Thousand Oaks know their thoughts.
Re: your July 14 article, â€œReservist asks court to stop 5th war tourâ€?:
I read this article with deep sadness. As the wife of a California Air National Guardsman who is scheduled for his fourth tour next spring, I understand the deep emotional strain placed on a family as they prepare to watch their loved one go to war. But to have to go through that again and again and again is just unbearable. How long must this go on? Just how many times must we go through this?
Re: Frank Moraga's July 13 essay, "A changing demographic":
Is anyone else in Ventura County as fed up as I am reading about how, in Moraga's world, we're all just supposed to "step out our front door and celebrate the rich cultural diversity of California" and then go have a burrito at some Mexican restaurant and call it good? To justify his whimsical point of view, he reiterates the projection that California will have a Hispanic majority by the year 2042. What he really is saying is, "We may as well get used to it."
America faces many dangers. The war against Islamic terrorism is most threatening and will last decades.
Unfortunately, Congress doesnâ€™t understand this threat or wonâ€™t acknowledge it. Many members of Congress, especially Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, have concluded America has lost the war in Iraq.
Re: your July 13 article, â€œAn innâ€™s outcryâ€?:
I have empathy for Tom Wolf and his family. Trying to get a building permit in this county is a total nightmare. The plan checkers we have dealt with are defensive about a system that is so bureaucratic, it costs thousands of dollars and months of hard work to get a permit.
Let's help David Beckham straighten out the worldâ€™s most popular sport â€” soccer.
Most in America are so ignorant of soccer that the only important thing to them is scoring a goal. A goal is necessary, but it's the "battle" to get the goal that's great to watch.
A 0-0 or 1-0 game can be the greatest game if you know the rules and concentrate on the battle. The most recent Boys Under-20 battle between Mexico and the United States, with a 2-1 win for the U.S., was a game fit for a king.
Re: Michael Thamesâ€™ July 11 letter, â€œClear the scene faster":
Are we really that callous â€” to hold a fellow human life in such contempt we value our commute over the loss of someoneâ€™s family member?
I would give the authorities wide berth to investigate and find out exactly how this personâ€™s life ended, and how they arrived to be "floating face down â€˜nearâ€™ Harbor Boulevard and Fifth Street." If this were my family member, I would expect the police to investigate the causes to the fullest extent and to leave no stone unturned.
The addition of a skateboard park in Oxnard shows the city's willingness to encourage children and adults alike to lead an active and healthy lifestyle, while at the same time keeping many underage children from vandalizing private and public property. The park gives an outlet for creative activity, healthy competitiveness and something for a family to do on the weekends.
Why then, in the middle of summer, on a weekend no less, does the city allow its half-a-million-dollar investment to go unused?
On Sunday morning at 7 a.m., I was awakened to a thunderous sound that seemed to be just outside my bedroom. It was a loud, mechanical noise that shook my windows. I looked out the window to see a helicopter spraying the avocado orchard just below me. Yes, once again, the farmer below me had decided that 7 a.m. on Sunday morning was the perfect time to spray his fields!
The thunderous noise continued for nearly three hours. I contacted the Ventura Police Department, but the operator said they had no jurisdiction and that it was probably a county issue.
Re: Bill Oâ€™Reillyâ€™s July 14 commentary, â€œAmericaâ€™s far left now socializing with socialismâ€?:
Bill Oâ€™Reilly states that Michael Moore left out a fact in â€œSickoâ€?: that the United States was higher in healthcare rankings than Cuba.
It is clear from this statement that O'Reilly is commenting on something he has not seen and just repeating something he has heard. For in the movie, a graph was shown that, in fact, the United States was indeed ranked higher than Cuba.
Re: The Rev. W. Lee Truman's July 16 letter, "Leaving Iraq would be a disaster":
Expressing his personal viewpoint that leaving Iraq would be an opportunity for the fundamentalist/terrorist Muslims to quickly destroy the freely elected government of Iraq, and insisting that the Iraqi population is in a struggle to determine their own government is certainly the Rev. Trumanâ€™s right to speak out as an American citizen. In fact, in a constitutional democracy, it's a necessity for every American citizen to speak out with oneâ€™s own personal opinion.
George Mason was one of the founding fathers and was known as the father of the Bill of Rights. He wrote this amazingly prescient reason for not giving the president unlimited powers to pardon: "The President of the United States has the unrestrained Power of granting pardon for treason; which may be sometimes exercised to screen from Punishment those whom he had secretly instigated to commit the Crime, and thereby prevent a discovery of his own guilt."
â€” Alex Magdaleno, Camarillo
Re: Stan Hubbellâ€™s July 16 letter, â€œGet going, Galleglyâ€?:
Isnâ€™t it about time everybody in both houses of Congress stopped playing politics? Based on everything that has transpired during President Bushâ€™s term in office, why havenâ€™t they started impeachment proceedings against both President Bush and Vice President Cheney?
It is appalling that neither Congress nor the media has called for impeachment of the (de facto) Dick Cheney/George Bush junta. Twelve years ago, President Clinton, rightfully, was taken to task for lying about his sexual misconduct. Time and again, the current administration has lied and at great cost to our country.
The framers of the Constitution, wisely, made provision for dealing with egotistical â€œdecidersâ€? who pronounce themselves above the Constitution.
Re: Steve Walton's July 12 letter, "Students being brainwashed":
I feel Walton's rhetoric is somewhat radical. He asserts these committed activists "wormed their way in through a school club.â€? As co-president and founder of the Ventura High School Peacers Club, I feel the need to clarify the intent of our successful Peace Week held April 9-14.
Re: your July 9 article, â€œSimi church to shelter illegal immigrantsâ€?:
I do not believe in separating families. I do believe, however, in obeying the laws of the land. Apparently, the United Church of Christ in Simi Valley believes in it also, since, before undertaking this, they did check and research their insurance policies to make certain they were not breaking any stipulations that would make their insurance null and void if a claim was made. Funny how they felt it was important to have and maintain their own "legal" protection but found no need to do this for their fellow countrymen who foot the bill for these people.
Re: your July 16 article, â€œPlanners ponder readying for 2050â€?:
Stacked roadways! Does no one remember the Kobe, Japan, earthquake of 1995 or the Bay Area earthquake of 1989? Both locations had elevated and stacked roadways that collapsed during their earthquakes. There were numerous casualties, if not deaths, from the collapsed stacked roadways.
Re: Noel Dâ€™Angeloâ€™s July 16 letter, â€œContraception is not pro-womanâ€?:
It appears the writer believes sex is something only men want or enjoy, and women who engage in it are generally doing so against their will, solely for the gratification of men. What a warped outlook on humanity and sexuality.
Re: John McNallyâ€™s July 13 commentary, â€œUniversal healthcare neededâ€?:
McNally is "right on" in my book! And I hope others will follow suit by endorsing this idea whose time has come. I hope our (sometimes) enlightened governor will not again veto SB840 because it is certainly the most workable plan to have come along. We cannot continue to tinker with the old system; it is beyond repair.
Let us start anew in California and be a trend-setter for Congress to get on the dime and seriously address this national issue.
â€” Eunice M. Koch, Ventura
Re: Steve Walton's July 12 letter, "Students being brainwashed":
As a parent of a current Ventura High School student, I am puzzled and insulted by the writer's negative attitude towards the VHS Peace Club's invitation to a "peace activist" to come on campus during the student-organized week of activities.
Re: Steve Waltonâ€™s July 12 letter, "Students being brainwashed":
Seeking peace is neither a simplistic nor short-sighted philosophy, as stated by Steve Walton. Seeking peace should be indoctrinated into all of us, either by our parents, our teachers or our churches.
I am surprised and saddened by Mr. Walton's opposition to peace clubs. These peace clubs encourage peace. I think to encourage peace should be a goal for all.
Re: your July 14 article, â€œMagician-turned skeptic aims to expose fraudsâ€? and your July 15 article, â€œAn event to entranceâ€?:
Could it be that your articles about James Randi on Saturday and ghost hunters at the Glen Tavern Inn in Santa Paula on Sunday were the result of some supernatural inspired convergence of conflicting forces â€” reason versus the supernatural?
Re: Bob Munsonâ€™s July 8 letter, â€œTired of war, warmongersâ€?:
While appreciating the gist of Mr. Munsonâ€™s letter, I cannot agree with his remarks about the 1945 United Kingdom election. As a student at Cambridge University in that year, shortly after being invalided out of the Royal Navy, I lived through that election. The reasons Prime Minister Winston Churchill, or rather the groups he represented, lost were:
Re: your July 15 editorial, â€œCAPE defies odds to openâ€?:
Great editorial about the Camarillo Academy of Progressive Education Charter School!
It is, however, important for everyone to know that there are not only parents involved. We have grandparents, teachers, past educators and even some community people who just believe in the future of our children.
This effort, in the minds of many, has solved the unification issue. CAPE will be a public school for grades kindergarten through 12.
Re: Steve Waltonâ€™s July 12 letter, "Students being brainwashed":
From the tone of Mr. Walton's objections to the high school peace activists, I wonder just who has been brainwashed.
Since we in Moorpark, at least, are unable to recycle any plastic other than types 1 and 2, could The Star use bags made from this material? Another local paper is already doing so. The number of Star bags that end up in the trash is probably very significant! Thank you.
â€” Kim Ramseyer, Moorpark
Re: your July 12 article, â€œFinancial overdraft fees cost billionsâ€?:
While I applaud The Starâ€™s attempts to inform the consumer regarding abusive practices among banks, Iâ€™m afraid the paper missed a few important points in this article.
"Blessed are the peacemakers.â€?
May I opine that this president simply does not understand the significance of Jesusâ€™ sermon on the mount? Each day brings copious bloodshed and unspeakable cruelty and pain. I support House Democrats in their efforts to end the travesty, as well as all the Republicans who are hiding in silence no more!
â€” Marjorie Loring Gauley, Newbury Park
Re: John Strubbeâ€™s July 13 letter, â€œLiberals â€˜are not afraidâ€™â€?:
I take this letter as good news. It seemed that the left feared free speech because of the recent calls for the return of the so-called "fairness doctrine" by leftist politicians in Washington in response to the power of talk radio. Further, expression of conservative ideas has been banned on most university campuses since the 1960s. Since the left doesn't fear free speech, our liberal arts professors will now be able to tolerate a wider range of viewpoints.
Re: your July 13 editorial, â€œWater alarm not a dry runâ€?:
I read this editorial and statements by responsible water company personnel expressing grave concern about the looming water shortage that will cause very serious problems for the residents of Ventura County.
All literate and even casually informed individuals in this county are aware of the precarious balance, occurring annually, between availability and usage of water here and throughout all of Southern California.
Re: Betsy Hart's July 14 commentary, â€œThe dating scene not in my teensâ€™ futureâ€?:
This commentary is so right! For several years now, I have been speaking with young people and parents through Pure Way ministry on issues of sexuality, purity and dating. While I teach abstinence, I teach the purpose and principles of dating and relationships with the opposite sex.
I would like to make a comment on the movie my husband and I just saw in Simi Valley, â€œSicko.â€? This is a must-see for everyone. People should go see it and judge for themselves about the healthcare we receive in this country versus other countries. It may be a real eye-opener â€” or maybe not.
â€” Ryta Fofanoff, Simi Valley
Re: Colleen Casonâ€™s July 15 column, â€œRock heads roster of countyâ€™s small wondersâ€?:
Thereâ€™s no question an image of George Washington is visible at the top of the Conejo Grade and north of Highway 101. I compare it favorably to his profile image on the quarter dollar.
Until the surrounding trees grew very tall, Washingtonâ€™s profile looking straight up was clearly discernable at a very narrow viewing angle from the deck at the rear of our house. From this vantage point, is was possible to see the traffic on the grade and the Washington profile.
It is obvious that the White House has paid little attention to recorded history of religious wars, nor will it acknowledge that we are involved with religious fanatics who will fight for decades "to the death." We are not prepared for what lies ahead.
"Stay the course," echoed by Republican presidential candidate John McCain with approximately a limited 160,000 soldiers, is folly. Production of military equipment necessary to fight this type of war is limited.
Congress "fiddles" while America burns.
â€” Jack Brukman, Westlake Village
Re: Ann McFeattersâ€™ July 16 commentary, "Bush can salvage legacy":
Ann McFeatters offers 13 suggestions to President Bush that are certainly excellent advice. However, to indicate that the point is to ensure that historians will say nice things about the ex-president takes far too lightly a very serious situation for the country as a whole.
Re: William Vietinghoffâ€™s July 12 commentary, â€œHonesty demands right factsâ€?:
Mr. Vietinghoff gave some interesting numbers on people without health insurance. I doubt there are really 9 million wealthy people without insurance â€” wealthy people usually have enough brains to buy insurance.
Re: your July 12 editorial, â€œAvoid getting West Nile bugâ€?:
Avoid getting the West Nile virus? Just how are you supposed to beware of infested mosquitoes? They are not wearing signs.
I live in the Ventura Harbor, on the north side of the Santa Clara River. The river is vast acres of standing water. The mosquito infestation in the harbor is unbearable. All you have to do is drive across the Santa Clara River bridge on Harbor Boulevard to see that there is a lake of standing water there.
U.S. foreign policy needs to shift from working to make every country like ours, and fighting against those that resist, to respecting every culture and country and finding mutually beneficial ways to interact.
The strength of the United States, the reason we are the most vibrant and powerful country in the world, is due to a history of welcoming, valuing and assimilating people of different cultures and countries. So, this policy is really an extension of something we've been doing right since this country was founded. We just need to make it the primary focus of our foreign policy.
On July 3, going out to pick up the newspaper, I noticed every mailbox decorated with our flag. Two young real estate agents, Iâ€™m sure thinking it would be a nice gesture, attached their fliers to the flags and put them in the mailboxes. My first thought was, â€œOh, I donâ€™t think this is a good idea.â€? Well, I was right. Unfortunately, those little flags ended up lying all over the street.
The July 2 public meeting on plans for Rancho Potrero was very well-attended. Some of the things that I came away with are: improvements will cost $450,000, and perhaps one of the Dos Vientos developers might defray some of the cost; it will accommodate parties of up to 200 people; the facilities will be rentable; some parking along Lynn Road will be added; and there will be a childrenâ€™s education venue and a few new trails.
What seemed to be missing:
When a proposed development seems so wrong for an area but is being supported by the county, I begin to wonder why and think that perhaps I am missing something. What am I missing regarding the county's support for the Gorian proposed project in Susana Knolls?
Re: John Strubbeâ€™s July 13 letter, "Liberals are not afraid":
Mr. Strubbe wrote a good letter espousing the views of many liberals towards conservatives. I frequently see this opinion and regret that many liberals don't realize that conservatives and liberals really want the same things for America. Both groups desire justice and equality for all people. They want all people to be free to live their lives as they see fit.
Re: your July 9 article, â€œDrivers say bridge widening has led to other problemsâ€?:
After reading the article on what will soon surely turn into a five-year, $85 million debacle of taxpayer funds, I pondered a response. And when I saw the photo on Page A6, I knew my response would be simple.
Recently, I visited the new Camarillo Library, which opened on March 31. This is truly a physically attractive and beautifully organized facility, with many resources and computers. It is a â€œcrown jewel.â€?
The next step should be to replace or expand a woefully antiquated and inadequate senior center, an embarrassment for a city of this size.
â€” Gary Traxler, Camarillo
I have found a quote worthy of recalling in present-day politics.
â€œA man who feels it is his duty to assume leadership of his people is not responsible to the laws of parliamentary usage or to a particular democratic conception, but solely to the mission placed upon him, and anyone who interferes with this mission is an enemy of the people.â€?
The fact that Adolf Hitler was so dedicated to his goals and his people has to be a true benchmark of leadership.
â€”Richard Oâ€™Brien, Oxnard
We don't expect the truth from the White House. Mainstream Americans know President Bush and Vice President Cheney are just liars. The long list of their lies continues to this very day. But their lies are treason against America, and treason in any form by the president and the vice president are grounds for impeachment and, in my view, a prison sentence.
The spirit of this wonderful country would be rejuvenated by articles of impeachment being slammed on the table by courageous congressmen and congresswomen speaking the voice of their constituents.
Re: your July 5 article, â€œOxnard district to close Pacific View Highâ€?:
I read about the successes accomplished at Pacific View High, and I always wonder when something like the closing down of a successful program happens, what people are thinking. It seems that those who are less able to defend themselves are the first to be in the line of fire.
Re: your July 11 article, â€œTortoise, a friend to an autistic boy, is mutilatedâ€?:
When I opened my paper and read about Bob the turtle, I was sickened by the brutality of what happened to this poor defenseless animal. How anyone could do something like that is a mystery to me. I only hope whoever did it gets his just desserts. This sicko's parents obviously never taught him kindness and respect for other people or creatures. Unfortunately, that is all too common today.
Who do the grocery companies think they are fooling? Six months of negotiations and they can't put a last, best and final offer on the table. They say they are willing to continue negotiations until an agreement is reached. That means they'll keep negotiating until hell freezes over!
Why, you ask? Well, Albertsons and Vons are trying to recoup all the money they lost in the strike, so the longer it takes them, the more money they can recoup. They lost billions, so how long do you think it will take?
All working Americans should beware: The three grocery markets are setting the standards for reducing wages and benefits for all who work for a paycheck.
Albertsons, Ralphs and Vons have not brought any meaningful wage or benefit offer to the current negotiations. The companies want to cut wages even more by adding a third tier for even lower wages, and they want to reduce benefits for all employees. They would just as soon have the taxpayers pick up the tab for all of their employeesâ€™ medical treatment.
Re: Nadine G. Frankelâ€™s July 10 commentary, â€œHospice beats suicideâ€?:
What this commentary fails to say is that at least in some areas, the patient may be denied hospice care.
Re: your July 11 article, â€œFumigant limits protestedâ€?:
I find it interesting that strawberry growers are being singled out for using fumigants. I am sure they do cause some pollution problems. However, everyone is well aware that the major cause of pollution is cars, trucks and buses. Of course, strawberry growers don't have any political clout and most likely do not contribute to political campaigns, or if they do, it probably isnâ€™t very much.
Re: Judy McLaughlinâ€™s July 10 letter, â€œPoint provedâ€?:
Just to set the record straight, Black Canyon Road is not a private road, and bicycles are allowed on it. The only thing â€œmyopicâ€? I can see is her narrow-minded viewpoint of the rights of bicyclists on Black Canyon or any other roadway.
For years, there was a chain and a sign stating "Private Road" at the lower entrance to Black Canyon, on the Simi Valley side, but this sign and gate were erected illegally by some unknown persons and have been removed. Black Canyon is now open to the public once more.
The Star, along with the majority of news organizations in the country, suffers from Bush Derangement Syndrome. Most of this is in the form of selective outrage, although it frequently includes lying by omission, as well.
Everyone wants the heads of the president and the attorney general for what they call the illegal firing of eight federal prosecutors. I donâ€™t seem to remember any such outrage when President Clinton had Janet Reno fire all 93 federal prosecutors. The fact is these prosecutors serve at the pleasure of the president. They may be terminated at will, with or without reason.
I would love to hear from others in the Thousand Oaks area who have attempted to recycle their aluminum cans lately. I recently filled my car up with bags of empty soda cans and then drove to all five recycling centers. I attempted to do this over five days, yet I still had a car full of cans. When you arrive at the centers, they are not manned as they are supposed to be, or they are full. The self-service machines, which are supposed to operate seven days a week, are always closed or broken. What a waste of gas and time!
Re: your July 6 editorial, "Money fails to convince kids":
The study by Associated Press reporter Martha Mendoza, cited in the editorial, represented only one side of a complex health issue. The study lost sight of the tremendous progress being made by the Network for a Healthy California, Los Angeles Unified School District, to teach low-income students the importance of eating more fruits and vegetables.
Re: Christina Wilsonâ€™s July 4 commentary, â€œFounders and religion: Is this what they had in mind?â€?:
You have to admire the persistence of the Bible thumpers. Under pretense of being concerned with her "Christian heritage," Christina Wilson wastes no time inferring her belief that all must be Bible believers because if we arenâ€™t, we will become "a nation that places itself in grave danger of losing the very freedoms and liberties our Founding Fathers fought for." But for a moment, let's indulge her premise.
Re: Don Treadwellâ€™s July 6 letter, â€œLeaving the GOPâ€?:
The writer says he has been a Republican since the Eisenhower administration. That makes me wonder if heâ€™s been a supporter of the GOP by attending local party fundraisers or supporting local GOP candidates or perhaps serving as a member of the Lincoln Club? Since heâ€™s a member of the Starâ€™s Community Advisory Board, I would assume he is very community-oriented. So I guess his â€œslamming the doorâ€? is the GOPâ€™s loss. I hope he doesnâ€™t regret moving over to the party that stands for investigation upon investigation, defeat in the war in Iraq, raising our taxes and socializing our medicine.
â€” Bob Scudder, Camarillo
The film â€œSickoâ€? highlights our healthcare systemâ€™s failures and calls for universal healthcare, which will hopefully be a nonpartisan issue.
Imagine how great our country would be and how proud we would be as Americans if primary healthcare, prescription drugs, dental care and corrective lenses were available to us all as a basic human right. This is a healthcare system that works in all other civilized countries. Healthcare is simply too important to be left to profit-driven motives.
Re: William S. Hinman IIIâ€™s July 5 letter, "Better area for a dog park":
As a real estate appraiser with 25-plus years of experience, I cannot say I have ever heard of an instance where a dog park â€” or any park â€” was considered a nuisance enough to adversely impact residential values. In fact, communities with more parks and recreation areas tend to be valued higher than those with fewer facilities. In effect, the dog park may indirectly (minimally) raise property values.
Re: Tom McClintockâ€™s June 17 commentary, â€œNew immigration bill? Try enforcing laws we haveâ€?:
I read that Sen. Dianne Feinstein complained that deportation of millions of illegal aliens is socially impractical. Feinstein seems oblivious that this attitude discredits any promise a new law will be enforced, but she has yet to explain what is wrong with our present immigration law.
Re: your July 8 article, â€œA family remedyâ€?:
Ventura County has decided to copy a troubled youth program from that model of social services success, the south and west sides of Chicago. They have been doing it in Chicago for 30 years. My guess is Chicago's gang crime and high school dropout rates are no better now than in 1977. What's next? A social services budget based on South Central Los Angeles?
There is an empty heart at the core of conservative ideology.
Conservatives are a vital part of this nation. Yet, they consistently espouse views that go against everything this nation stands for.
America was founded on the Enlightenment ideals of law, justice and reason, the concept that societies must always advance or perish, that through reason and logic rather then blind faith, human beings can improve the world.
Re: Richard Larsenâ€™s July 10 essay, â€œPresident in waitingâ€?:
Larsen proclaims that our planetâ€™s most insidious threat is the destruction of the environment. How about terrorism by Islamo-fascists? This entire essay mentions the possibility of a terrorist attack only once, which is dangerously naÃ¯ve.
Is Mr. Larsen aware of what happened recently in the United Kingdom? Is he aware of the countless, numerous terrorist attacks that have been perpetrated globally in the last five years? Yet, how many people have died from global warming?
Re: Ed Jonesâ€™ July 11 commentary, â€œWhite House â€˜fall guyâ€™ was working with a safety netâ€?:
And now, for the rest of the story.
Ed Jones made a big issue out of the I. Lewis â€œScooterâ€? Libby commutation. Some things he wrote about need correction.
Re: your July 7 article, â€œâ€˜Made in Chinaâ€™ is cause for concernâ€?:
Note to the Chinese manufacturers: Keep up the exports! Americans have short memories, and it wonâ€™t be long until we are importing $1 trillion of your products, up from the current $288 million.
Re: Dan K. Thomassonâ€™s July 8 essay, â€œBush did right by Libbyâ€?:
Why am I not surprised at Thomasson's piece of drivel on the commutation of Scooter Libby? Thomasson has proven to be a shill for the Republican Party in his previous articles, and he provides nothing new whatsoever in his analysis. He doesn't offer any explanation as to why a Republican-appointed prosecutor and Republican-appointed judges would have any reasonable motive to be gunning for Libby or Vice President Cheney. He offers one irrelevant example of sentencing precedent, while ignoring the highly relevant examples of normal sentencing for people guilty of perjury and obstruction of justice. He also ignores Bush's long-term opposition to executive pardons and Bush's Department of Justice rules against offering relief to convicted felons unless they serve at least a significant part of their sentences.
I would like someone from the city of Ventura to explain how a developer got permission to build what appears to be a very modern-looking loft on top of the historical building on the corner of Chestnut and Main streets in downtown Ventura. Considering the amount of grief the city has given other developers on other projects, I find it very suspicious that this structure has appeared with very little discussion.
â€” Lynn Arneill-Brown, Ventura
Re: your July 6 editorial, â€œMoney fails to convince kidsâ€?:
This editorial is correct in that obesity is a serious national health problem that needs to be addressed. Nutrition education is necessary but alone is insufficient to combat the problem. A comprehensive strategy, which includes education, is required to promote an environment that encourages healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle.
Re: Ed Jonesâ€™ July 11 commentary, â€œWhite House â€˜fall guyâ€™ was working with a safety netâ€?:
I liked Ed Jonesâ€™ column on the I. Lewis â€œScooterâ€? Libby case.
One thing I haven't seen mentioned in print is why it was just a commutation and not a full pardon.
Re: your July 11 article, â€œTighter law to muzzle noisy dogs studiedâ€?:
As a dog owner and resident of Camarillo for more than 20 years, I am disappointed in the city wasting time and money on this issue.
I had a neighbor who walked around the neighborhood, calling Animal Control on any dog that barked, even once. Coming home from work, I would find notices on my door that Animal Control had come out to the house to investigate. This was the only neighbor who complained, as the other neighbors around me have dogs and he called on them as well. This happened at least once a week.
Re: Bob Brooksâ€™ July 8 commentary, â€œFighting terrorism is everybody's businessâ€?:
I was encouraged by Sheriff Brooks' recognition of the danger posed to our country by terrorists and our community's responsibility to itself to be aware and vigilant. I was disappointed to find out that, like the Simi Valley Police Department, the Sheriffâ€™s Department has opted not to avail itself of training provided under the 1996 Immigration & Naturalization Act. We forget sometimes that the 19 who murdered more than 3,000 people on Sept. 11, were here illegally due to forged papers and/or overstayed visas. I would like the extra security that training would provide.
â€” Gary Collins, Simi Valley
Re: Susan Hartwick-Sauerâ€™s July 3 letter, â€œBat girlâ€?:
This self-described "responsible citizen" from Santa Paula wrote about finding her dog with a bat in its mouth. She was worried about the $40 charge by Animal Control and having to quarantine her dog. A â€œresponsible citizenâ€? would understand the danger of rabies and maybe even recognize a bat, although maybe the dog had gummed it a bit.
About one person every 10 minutes dies of rabies somewhere in the world.
Here we go again with the county bending over backward to accommodate overdevelopment in the Susana Knolls.
The first sellout was the Fire Department going along with allowing Katherine Road as a secondary access if the developer widens the road through to the Santa Susana Pass. That will only devastate the rural atmosphere and character of an entire neighborhood, along with the current canopy of oak trees. The emergency vehicles did not have issues with access during the 2005 Topanga fire. Is the uniqueness and character of the Knolls considered expendable?
The Ventura County Grand Jury has ruled on the selection/election method that the Triunfo Sanitation District board uses to find its members: The verdict is a thumbs-down on selection. The idea of "taxation without representation" dies hard, but hopefully this opinion by the grand jury will hasten its demise as far as the TSD board is concerned. Let's do the right thing and have an all-elected, representative board.
â€” Bonnie Biddison, Oak Park
Re: Judy McLaughlin's July 10 letter, "Point proved":
Using Ms. McLaughlin's logic, perhaps people of certain ethnicities â€” â€œfor their own safetyâ€? and out of â€œrespectâ€? for others â€” should avoid visiting certain establishments apparently open to the public and subject to nondiscrimination laws, just in case a neo-Nazi-type there â€œaccidentallyâ€? pulls the trigger. My appreciation for the necessity of self-defense and significance of the Second Amendment continues to grow.
Re: your June 23 article, â€œControlling gangsâ€?:
The Star reports that Capt. Ron Nelson, who oversees the Sheriffâ€™s Departmentâ€™s gang unit, said the unitâ€™s tactics are working.
How can The Star continue to print such nonsense decade after decade?
Donâ€™t be fooled by the sham community process on Rancho Potrero.
Unfortunately, there has already been a city vote to annex and develop scenic Broome Ranch/Rancho Potrero property. This area, the most magnificent viewshed in the Santa Monica Mountains and Newbury Park, is indeed threatened by incompatible development. The annexation development scenario includes a huge, graded road (very wide for buses) and a permanent facility tent large enough for 200 or more guests.
I chuckle when I see posters in Thousand Oaks reading, â€œBuy local.â€? About a half dozen local storeowners have recently gone out of business in Newbury Park. How can we shop locally when local businesses are closing their doors? The closing of our favorite Ace Hardware Store was most devastating.
The closures of the local stores have taken place at Wendy Drive and Old Conejo Road â€” a deli, a barber shop, a bar, a feed store and the local Ace Hardware. Jo-Ann has moved to a new location in Moorpark.
In order to better maintain the economic vitality of the city of Oxnard and the greater region of Ventura County, the Oxnard Chamber of Commerce has created a new Land Use Committee and review policy to ensure due diligence on issues brought to the board of directors. This committee and policy will assist the board in lending its support to land-use projects and policies, including economic enhancements and infrastructure improvements for transportation, housing, recreation and open space and quality of life. With the creation of the Land Use Committee and review policy, we ensure the review process will be faster, more thorough and unbiased.
Re: your April 4 article, â€œPeace Club plans week of activities at Ventura Highâ€?:
I am surprised and saddened that these â€œpeace activistsâ€? are allowed to blatantly come onto a high school campus to indoctrinate the unsuspecting students in their simplistic and short-sighted philosophy. Children at this age should be taught how to think for themselves, not be barraged with this head-in-the-sand politics and anti-Americanism. Since they are required to attend school, the students are in fact a captive audience. It is not excusable that these activists wormed their way in through a school club.
Keep the dam
I am very concerned about taking out the Matilija Dam. The dam is no harm to anyone. To say it will bring back the trout is ridiculous. Beneath the dam is a mineral hot springs. Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and the state of California should take this property and make it a state park. I swam in the Matilija pool many times in the â€™70s, picnicked there, and bathed in tubs filled with the hot mineral springs water. Iâ€™m afraid taking out the dam will harm the â€œnatural phenomena,â€? really God-caused, and we will lose out on something very beneficial. Father Olivas owned it when I bathed there and also had a little store. Please, may our politicians rethink this problem and quit throwing our money down the sewer.
â€” Carole Anne Waltz, Ojai
Re: Margaret Morrisâ€™s July 1 letter, â€œSheer bigotryâ€?:
Morris writes, â€œBut (Terry) Paulson and this whole â€˜clash of civilizationsâ€™ crowd is going somewhere maybe you want to think twice about following. Is this something The Star should be giving ink to?â€?
Yes, dear Star, this is something you most definitely should be giving ink to. Lots. Paulson and the author of the book he wrote about, â€œAmerica Alone,â€? are obviously among those individuals with â€œtheir ear to the ground.â€?
It was good to see that progressive Democrats will try to make their party more responsive to the needs of the people. They are proposing to do this in two ways: by working â€œwithin the party, no matter how disgusted and disillusioned with it one may justifiably be,â€? and also by working with issue groups outside of the party.